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Journal

Daily news with a European perspective. Presented from the Deutsch Welle studios in Berlin.

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China 12, U.s. 10, Tokyo 6, Nhk 3, Noda 3, Mr. Asano 3, Newsline 3, Ramin Mellegard 2, Taliban 2, Northeastern China 2, Iran 2, Pakistan 2, Us 2, Catherine Kobayashi 2, Bangladesh 2, Ramin 1, Yoshihiko Noda 1, Yuko Fukushima 1, Benjamin Netanyahu 1, Helen Bodden 1,
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  KCSMMHZ    Journal    Daily news with a European  perspective.   
   Presented from the Deutsch Welle studios in Berlin.  

    November 12, 2012
    5:30 - 5:59pm PST  

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glad to have you with us on this edition of "newsline." it's tuesday, november 13th. i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. japan's prime minister is getting caught up in his own words. yoshihiko noda suggested a few months ago he would call an election. members of the opposition are putting more and more pressure on him to follow through. but he faces divisions within his democratic party. noda said during the summer that he would call an election in his words some time soon.
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he says he stands by his promise. >> translator: i am responsible for my own words, and i take their weight very seriously. >> noda told his party's secretary general on sunday that he's thinking of dissolving the lower house by the end of the year. noda set three conditions for calling the elections including passing a debt financing bill. lawmakers expect to enact the legislation soon. kosishi says dissolving the diet would create a political vacuum. we may soon see more american oil tycoons. yu yu yu yu yuko fukushima joins us now. >> we're hearing that the united states will become the world's largest oil producer within five years. the dramatic prediction by the
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international energy agency comes as new technologies opens up huge oil reserves underground. the iea said u.s. oil output will surpass that of saudi arabia and other countries by 2017. the u.s. has established technology to extract shale oil from hard rock layers thousands of meters below the ground. commercial production has already begun. the agency says the u.s. will be nearly self-sufficient by 2035. that's due to an expected surge in the production of shale gas, a type of natural gas also trapped in underground rock. america currently relies on imports for 20% of energy needs. once the u.s. achieves successful sufficiency in energy, it may start showing less interest in oil producing regions including the middle east. let's check on the markets. the u.s. markets changed little
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overnight. trading volume was low as other markets as long as the u.s. bonds market was closed for veterans day. and to see how stocks in japan are doing, we go to ramin mellegard at the tokyo stock exchange. how are things kicking off over there? >> good morning to you. yes, indeed. still a bit of hesitation in the markets there with the u.s. fiscal cliff and also the concerns whether greece will get another bailout from the eurozone community as well. some is weighing on the markets here. finance in the eurozone wrapped up one of their meetings. there's another one planned for next week. we'll keep an eye on that. let's have a look at the opening levels today. and both indexes trading in the positive there. key psychological level which we closed below yesterday. looking a bit positive in the first minutes of trading. nikkei closed below 8,700
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yesterday. but looking at asian indexes yesterday and i'll keep track of them today, we might get a bit of boost there. especially the shanghai composite which were trading higher. china data over the weekend which actually showed exports growing 11.6% was a boost there suggesting a turnaround there for the second biggest economy of the world. i'll see how it affects the nikkei today. there's also signs of growth in the u.s. as well. and if leaders there should avoid a fiscal cliff, though we could be getting positive sentiment into the year end. that's a very big focus for financial markets globally as well. domestic issues here in focus. a spat with the political infighting creating a fiscal cliff in japan as well. but investors may get a bit of a breather. party leaders look like they might reach an agreement to allow the government to issue debt covering bonds. and that'll help towards their
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budget. gdp data on monday in japan showed japan's output shrank 0.9% as well. we'll keep track of that. let's go to the yen. a big issue of course here in japan. 79.47-62. not that much change, but the yen remaining relatively strong. euro/yen 101.14-18. sentiment in the u.s., china. as well as a possible deficit financing bill here in japan, there's still the key matter of earnings. we're not through yet. we're going to have the megabanks due out this week. that'll also give a picture of financial services. investors want to see how much losses the banks will have to underwrite as well. a bit of a positive morning. back to you. >> thanks, ramin. ramin mellegard at the tokyo stock exchange. well, the people who made japanese money, the operators of
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the national mint are pitching to overseas governments. officials at the japanese mint osaka office are expecting to receive the order soon for 5 million bangladesh taka coins. they're made of stainless steel and worth about two yen or about three cents. the authority joined five bidders for the job that was opened by the bangladeshi government. japan's advanced minting technology was reportedly a factor. japan's mint has produced foreign commemorative coins in the past this will be the first time since world war ii to mint a foreign currency. after contracts are siend wi-- e
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bangladesh government. the mint hopes to receive other orders. that is all for now. i'll leave you with markets here in asia. israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu says his
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forces will not tolerate attacks in retaliation for shells that flew across the border. syrian morters fell for a second day on golan heights. officials said the attacks may be a spillover from the syrian civil war. >> we'll take whatever action is necessary to put a stop to this. this is not merely our right, it's also our duty. >> israeli soldiers sent out warning shots on sunday when a syrian shell hit an army post. israeli forces captured the golan heights from syria in the six-day war. a truce has been in place since 1973. iran's military is putting on a show of strengths. forces are conducting massive drills to test air defenses and send a message to the country's critics. about 8,000 elite revolutionary guards and regular army troops
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are participating in what they call the largest air drill. the troops will practice maneuvering fighter jets to deal with incursion into iranian air space. they're staging a mock counter attack to bring down unmanned reconnaissance planes. app spokesperson for the military said the drill is designed to send a strong warning to those threatening iran. the use of drones over the persian gulf to monitor iran's nuclear program. israel's leaders have warned they'll conduct air raids if iran refuses to halt its nuclear program. afghan officials have requested pakistani help in bringing about peace talks with taliban insurgents. met pakistani foreign minister on monday in islamabad. rabani is head for peace talks with the taliban. he says it's necessary for
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afghanistan's stability. he reportedly asked pakistan to act as mediator in potential talks. but the insurgents have shown a positive attitude with the u.s. government. former intelligence chief told nhk pakistan is well placed to support peace talks due to the authorities' close relationship with the taliban. china's hu jintao has overseen an economy that expanded year after year after his ten years as president. but many have missed out. they watched their neighbors get wealthier and wealthier. that's left many seething with resentment and many are trying to find solace in their face. michitaka yamaoka explains. >> reporter: about 300 people live in this village in gangsu
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province. more than 2/3 of the residents work the landed. that includes this man. he lives with his wife. their life is close to self-sufficient. they make less than $100 a year farming. they also receive money from their son. he's a migrant worker 350 kilometers away. but despite the extra money, their annual income is only $500. 1/20 of the average income of beijing workers. he suffers from a heart condition. he makes regular visits to the clinic. but he says if he were ever to
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need operation, it would be impossible. the health issue from the local government does not cover the cost. the clinic is different. there isn't enough medicine. and only one doctor works there. >> translator: i'm very worried about my future life. how can i live? >> reporter: the quality of the medical care here is typical of so many areas in northern china. it does not match what people in cities receive. government figures health care workers in the countryside compared with cities, rural people have only 1/3 the number of health care workers for every 10,000 people.
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the government also says the number of infants who die in rural china is more than three times in cities. about three out of every ten infants in the countryside dies. in the cities, it's about one out of ten. if the government can't help them, some turn to the comfort of the faith. for it has been attending services at the local protestant church since february. >> translator: going to church has gradually helped me accept the hardships of life. many people here believe that some day their suffering will end. if they follow the word of the lord. >> reporter: this is a church minister influenced by his
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parents. he began missionary work here four years ago. but the chinese government has not officially sanctioned near the church. even though china's constitution guarantees religious freedom. >> translator: the government, well, i have to say it watches us closely. just the same, we're going to press ahead. to press ahead with our activities because what we want to do is offer as many villages as possible peace of mind. that's what we want to accomplish. >> reporter: the number of christians in china is growing rapidly especially in the rural areas. one estimate puts the number at more than 100 million. this trend along with discontent in rural china worries
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government officials. they fear it might undermine party control. michitaka yamaoka, nhk world. >> china gave the media a glimpse of its military aircraft ahead of an annual air show. it showed off some domestically produced unmanned aircraft and a stealth fighter. the air show will open on tuesday. it will be the country's largest. drones developed by a state owned company are on display for the first time. the aircraft was covered by a cloth. there appears to be missiles beneath its wings. models of other unmanned aircraft are also on display. the government plans to use drones for surveillance over the disputed islands in the east china and south china seas. a 1/4 scale model of the j-31 was also attracting a lot of attention.
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china reportedly succeeded in a test flight in october. cradle of culture. economic powerhouse. many enjoy the fruits of pros r prosperity along the path to a new china, but millions are missing out. at a time of growing public discontent, members of the party are choosing their new leaders. nhk correspondents are reporting. don't miss "china: the next generation" 8:00 p.m. japan time here on "newsline." south korean prosecutors have obtained documents in connecticut with the dubious land deal with bak's son. suspected of being involved in the illegal purchase of a plot of land for his father's retirement. part of the money used in the deal was allegedly funneled from
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the office. to submit documents related to the deal such as hard copies. that was after they were rejected from searching the office even though they obtained a search warrant. were insufficient. they're considering questioning president yi's wife in the matter as well. two more bbc executives stepped aside monday amid fallout over the corporation's child abuse investigations. director general already resigned sass over the scandal. helen bodden director of bbc news and steven mitchell passed their responsibilities on to others. to implicate a former worker in abuse. bbc officials are also conducting an internal investigation that a late
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children's tv presenter sexually abused children. bodden and mitchell were involved in a decision last year to not launch investigati into the allegations. officials say they plan to overhaul the editorial system and clarify the chain of command. australia's leaders are also grappling with a child abuse scandal. prime minister julia gillard has launched into abuse in churches and schools. gillard said a commission will begin an inquiry next year into institutional abuses. >> child abuse is, of course, wrong and wrong doers should be punished. this is an incredibly evil thing. we all hope that anybody who has ever abused a child is held to account for that in the criminal courts. >> a catholic priest was last week accused of molesting young kong regants in wales.
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officials who discovered abuse were transferred to other churches. the commission will also investigate whether police and child services are properly handling cases of child abuse. carpenters in japan have built houses throughout the countryside with wood made from nearby forests. but some homeowners worry their homes could burn down. now one company has developed a treatment to make lumber that's resistant to fire. >> reporter: this is a coffee shop in tokyo, part of a major international franchise. each shop has its own unique interior design. in this shop, wood is used extensively. >> translator: wood has a warm image that's just right when you want to relax.
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>> reporter: unfortunately, however, japanese law prohibits the use of lumber in many public buildings. that's why non-combustible lumber has been used in the shop. the specially treated wood is highly resistant to fire. this experiment shows how non-combustible lumber compares to standard lumber. each piece is set alight reaching 1,000 degrees celsius. the standard wood was completely burnt in about 20 minutes. but the non-combustible lumber just turned into charcoal without producing any flames or smoke. the great east japan earthquake heightened the level of awareness in japan concerning disaster prevention and increased the demand for non
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non-combustible lumber. the company president asano shows us the special liquid that makes his lumber non-combustible. this is a concentrated solution of borate, one of the ingredients used to create glass. the liquid is permeated into the cell wall. when dried, only the borate remains on the cell wall. the cell wall is effectively encased in glass making the wood fire resistant. taking advantage of this technology, mr. asano is in charge of a big project. the project is a collaboration between a leading university. the aim is to construct a high-rise building using
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non-combustible lumber. the elastic nature of wood allows vibrations to be absorbed. because of these attributes, wooden buildings are known for being resilient to earthquakes. mr. asano believes it is desirable for japan to continue with a lifestyle that chooses lumber as its main resource. disaster may strike again. he is determined to contributing to the materials that can withstand damage. >> translator: non-combustible lumber is useful for building a nation. and we will be able to provide special places. >> reporter: is it possible to build a whole non-combustible town? mr. asano aims to take up the challenge. people in northeastern china are dealing with heavy amounts
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of snow. we're told more in the world weather forecast. >> yes. northeastern china as well as southeastern russia and north korea are seeing heavy snow. we have a video from northeastern china. residents have been hit by heavy snow and sleet since saturday. more than 20 centimeters of snow have piled up in chow yen. drivers have run into serious traffic disturbances and widespread blackouts have effected the area. hundreds of green houses have collapsed under the weight of the snow. so yes, the residents are heavily being effected and travel disturbances continue to impact the area for the rest of today. let's pull back and show you here that the peak of the heav snow will be tapering off. however, the winter storm will be lingering across the similar
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regions for the next couple days. as for japan, we have a cold surge of air coming in. this winter pattern will be kicking in starting tomorrow and making things light across much of the eastern half of the continent. especially in sapporo. you may see the first of the season up north starting thursday. things are still going to be rough across northern japan. specially the western flank. gusty conditions across the region. those gusts could pick up the waves along the sea of japan coast about five meters high. you see all the precipitation here. even in the lower grounds starting tomorrow. we may see that start to turn to white. across tokyo things are going to be settled down across much of the rest of china things are clearing up but very cold. we'll look at those temperatures later on. another tropical impression has formed here in the tropics.
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that's not going to intensify, but will likely move towards southern vietnam. bringing heavy rain throughout the area in the next 24, 48. mandalay, this is the area near to the epicenter of the earthquake. that's 33 degrees temperaturewise. but remaining dry for the next few days. ulaanbaatar just minus 10 for the high. and changchun minus 1. let's move over to the americas. nothing really extreme happened yet from the front of this low pressure system. but still sagging down towards gulf of mexico. and as it moves along towards the eastern sea boards, it will be bringing a couple of thunderstorm activity. low pressure system is actually over near quebec. so snow will be piling up across the regions. the pacific northwest also has winter storm warnings in effect.
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cascades you may see an additional 50 centimeters of snow. across southern california, red flag alert is in place. but on the other hand, texas and alabama, this is where freeze warnings are in place. especially the overnight hours. 19 for the high. but overnight hours, watch out. and winnipeg minus 5 for your high. single digits you may see on your wednesday. here's the extended weather forecast.
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and that concludes this edition of "newsline." i'm catherine kobayashi in tokyo. thanks very much for joining us.
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